Ireland’s Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Simon Coveney has introduced new laws to protect the integrity of Irish spirit drinks products including whiskey, poitin and cream.

According to Coveney, these regulations would provide Irish companies developing Irish spirit drinks sector with the necessary protection.

The regulations will also apply on a range of other protected spirit drinks that are produced within the European Union.

Products such as Irish Whiskey, Irish Poitin and Irish Cream are protected "Geographical Indications" under European Law that ensures that the spirits are produced in the island of Ireland and that they comply with the approved technical specification.

Coveney said: "These regulations provide critically important protection for Irish companies in the developing Irish Spirit Drinks sector, which has ambitious plans to establish a number of new distilleries to meet the growing demand worldwide."

According to Coveney, the country’s whiskey sector has seen a growth of around 200% in the last decade.

"In 2014, close to 7 million cases of Irish Whiskey were exported to over 100 countries. Exports are set to exceed 12 million cases by 2020 and 24 million cases by 2030.

"Three years ago, the island of Ireland had four distilleries in operation – in the next three years that number could grow to over 20. I am confident that this success can be replicated in other spirit drinks products," added Coveney.